Officials warn of nasty algae toxins in water at Blue Lake Park

Officials warn of nasty algae toxins in water at Blue Lake Park
Blue Lake Park. (File photo by Shannon L. Cheesman, KATU.com Producer/Reporter.)

TROUTDALE, Ore. - Visitors to popular Blue Lake Park east of Portland are being advised not to come into contact with water in the lake due to dangerous toxins given off by bacteria.

The advisory from the Oregon Health Authority was issued Tuesday morning and includes warnings not to get the water on the skin and to especially avoid drinking it under any circumstances.

The said the toxins coming from the blue-green algae in the lake "cannot be removed by boiling, filtering or treating the water with camping-style filters."

"People who may draw in-home water directly from Blue Lake are advised to use an alternative water source because private treatment systems are not proven effective in removing algae toxins," the advisory reads.

OHA said symptoms include "numbness, tingling, and dizziness that can lead to difficulty breathing or heart problems and require immediate medical attention."

Other symptoms include "skin irritation, weakness, diarrhea, nausea, cramps and fainting" and sufferers should get medical attention if they persist. Children and pets are also at risk from the water.

The also advise any fish caught in the lake be specially prepared to avoid contamination.

Read the entire press release here (PDF).